Monday, April 29, 2013

The greatest discovery

“Every sperm is sacred.” –Monty Python

Everyone talks about how the media affects little girls. About how Barbi and TV shows and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue make them think they’re not good enough. About how they have to torture themselves mentally and physically trying to live up to some inflated and insane ideal of beauty. In fact, just this week I saw (yet) another article about the impossible proportions of Barbi’s figure. What a scoop! Oh, it’s so sad. If only there was some way to stop this Barbi juggernaut from destroying young girls’ psyches. If only there was some way that parents could stop their children from getting these dolls. But how I ask you, how?

Believe it or not, the holy trinity of Van Damme, Schwarzenegger, and Stallone made me—a boy!—a little self-conscious too. And being surrounded by an army of He-men, GI Joes and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and all their rippling plastic molded muscles convinced me that it wasn’t great to be short and fat. Hell, even the most vile villains like Stinkor and Rocksteady were shredded Adonises—Adonii?—whose horrifying birth defects and mutations couldn’t hide their bulging biceps and six pack abs. The only character I could relate to was Ram Man but even Prince Adam got more chicks than him. And when my dad kept pointing out that I had hooters, I felt they’d be the only real hooters I’d ever touch.

So don’t tell me women have cornered the market on body issues. I knew I was fat and I knew girls thought that was gross. I was constantly and always aware that I didn’t look like I should, that I wasn’t what the ladies were looking for. But I still tried. I didn’t actually, you know, talk to them or anything, but I did take the time to try do something cool with my hair and find the right cologne and even tried to coax a beard out of my three facial hairs. I almost bought a cool shirt one time but, again, my dad pointed out that you could see my hooters in it. I even once bought a ridiculous choker necklace with a skull on it, but somehow it didn’t work. I eventually developed a sense of humor and managed to get up enough courage to talk to girls, you know, if I absolutely had to. But shockingly, even though so many women say they want a funny guy, they were more interested in the guys who’d drop their shirts in the blink of an eye. It’s almost as if they were shallow and were objectively judging men by their physical features. Nah, that couldn’t be. Only men do that.

I knew I was screwed as far as actual screwing went. And I was ok with it. But I was still horny. Then one night, I found out I could take matters into my own hands. Literally.

I was in bed reading, probably something by Robert Ludlum or Dean Koontz, and my hand was in my pants, like it always was when I was relaxing. I don’t know if this was my natural state or a subconscious imitation of Al Bundy, but it was comfy. Normally, I just left my hand there, like I couldn’t relax without being sure everything was still where it was supposed to be. But this time, I started doing a little more. I don’t know if I was reading a particularly good scene—Koontz and Ludlum had some steamy stuff before they decided they were too good for it—but for some reason I actually started rubbing. And tugging.

It felt good, which was a pleasant surprise. This was a whole new way to entertain myself. So I kept doing it, not even thinking about it, just reading and rubbing. Then I remembered something I’d seen on TV or from the older boys in school. They’d always dismiss someone’s dumb comment by cupping one hand and making a jerking motion. Usually got a few laughs. And I thought to myself, wouldn’t that work on my dick?

So I started doing that. And it was good. So good. I tried turning my hand upside down and that was pretty good too. It even worked with my left. It was good slow. It was good fast. It couldn’t fail. Reading was fun. Stroking myself was fun. I’d found 2 great things that went great together.

A little while later, I don’t know how long, I felt something building. Something odd. But good. Almost like I had to pee, but somehow I knew I didn’t. I’d already taken my dick out of my pants for easier access—I had a lock on my door—which was good because the sensation kept building until it exploded. Literally. Sticky goo erupted all over my pants. And my book. And a little on the floor. I didn’t know what the fuck was happening. It felt good, but it actually kind of hurt too, as if I’d just blasted a bigger hole in my dick.

I was a little freaked out that something other than pee was coming out my penis, but I kept it to myself. This was weird, and little messy, but it felt right. And good. Really fucking good.

This is the problem with going to a Jewish private school. I honestly didn’t have a fucking clue what had just happened. No one had ever taught us this stuff. In biology class, we had turned to the chapter on reproduction and then some idiot had laughed and said “Hey, that’s a picture of a penis! Ha ha ha, gross!” and that was the end of that chapter. Even when we were just learning about animals, that same idiot laughed and said “When you’re talking about animals being in heat, you mean they’re hot right? David thinks you’re talking about sex. What an idiot!”

And of course we didn’t have sex education. Because if you knew about sex, you would have sex. But if you didn’t learn about it in school, you would never learn about it anywhere else. Logic!

Then again, if they had taught us that the joystick between our legs was more fun than any video game, we probably would have run home and started playing. We’d have ignored all our homework and gotten rejected by all the good colleges and the school’s image would have suffered. So maybe it was good thing they delayed this discovery by a few months so I could have one semester of good grades.

Of course, they did teach us it was evil to masturbate. Not that they explained what it was or how you did it. We were just told not to spill our seed, as if we were all gardeners.

Fortunately, like I said, I was a big reader—had plenty of time thanks to the ladies’ odd fascination with tall, dark, and handsome—and obviously I’d read my share of sex scenes. In hindsight, I’m surprised my mother let me read those books, but I guess she figured it was better I learn from books than talk to her about it. Or maybe she just hadn’t gone totally crazy yet.

So I understood the basic mechanics. I’d read about throbbing members, about guys being so hard they were numb, about approaching a cliff or being carried by a growing wave of sensation and screaming climaxes and all kinds of flowery nonsense, but I wasn’t reading anything that would describe it. And I don’t think I’d ever realized I could just do it myself. But I did the math and I realized that I’d discovered how to jerk off. And it wasn’t just good. It was fucking awesome!

Suddenly, a door had opened in front of me. And I quickly slammed it shut and locked it so I could masturbate in peace. I was a boy possessed, looking for anything I could get my hands on to help me get my hands on myself. I’ve heard of kids having to masturbate in showers, of parents raising their eyebrows knowingly as the water runs for 20 minutes, and I pity those poor bastards. Sure, soap and shampoo is nice, but doing it standing up with nothing to look at? And everyone in the house knowing what’s going on? Sad. No one had any idea why I was always locked in my room or why we went through tissues so fast, right? I was living it up with a lock on the door and a TV in my room. If it had boobs, I was watching. Terrible, terrible shows like Model Inc., and Unhappily Ever After got minor rating spikes because of the major spike in my pants. And the best was obviously Married with Children with Kelly Bundy. I still can’t hear the words “The New-“ without thinking of “The Neeeeeeeew Allande” and the Bundy Bounce. Hmmmm, Bundy Bounce.

 I eventually got tired of leaving my room to get tissues, and I was a little worried I might have to do some quick cleanup if someone knocked on my door. So instead, I’d just take care of business and then quickly roll on my side and shoot it between the bed and the wall. Genius. I just hope my parents never move that bed before they sell the house. Then again, maybe they could sell it as a modern art masterpiece. I’m actually surprised no nut job has figured out a way to color his sperm and paint with it.

I was coming of age just as Pam Anderson exploded on the scene and soon I was exploding too. Baywatch trumped everything else and when Pam did Playboy—for the 4th time—I had to have it. I went down to the local magazine shop and did the whole skunking around thing, waiting until the coast was clear, before grabbing it and slipping it onto the counter facedown, wondering if the owner of uncertain nationality was aware he shouldn’t be selling this to a 13-year old. He wasn’t! I slipped my brown-paper-wrapped treasure into my knapsack and left just as my English teacher walked in—the holy Binity of Pam’s boobs must have been protecting me. I thanked them profusely as soon as I got home.

Holy shit. Finally, a naked woman. A bunch of naked women. So curvy, so smooth, so naked. This was like taking some starving kid from Ethiopia and dropping him off in a Vegas buffet. Mind—and loads—blown. I think I went into a fugue state for the next week. Or month. A year? No, probably just a week.

But that was only the beginning. We had TVs everywhere in the house but only 3 had cable. One of those was in the basement, so it wasn’t unusual for me to disappear down there on Monday nights to watch wrestling. And lucky me, they had just started amping up the sexuality. Instead of sexually frustrated gigantesses pummeling each other’s already misshapen faces, Vince Mcmahon brilliantly introduced scantily clad bombshells slapfighting and hair-pulling and mud-wrestling. Even the valets moved on from the modest, shoulder-padded outfits of Ms. Elizabeth and started prancing about in cheerleaders outfits or bikinis or just strategically placed painted handprints. So instead of being a piss-break, these matches became jack-breaks.

And then one day, flipping through the channels, I found the squiggly channels. Back then, cable didn’t have the technology to just fully block the premium or pay-per-view channels, they could only scramble them into static. Simpler times. But if you flipped back and forth fast enough, the static would resolve for a split second, long enough to see a booby. Maybe. Pretty sure they were boobies. Definitely close enough. Suddenly, wrestling wasn’t as important. Well, it was still important, but as soon as a match got even slightly boring I was back at the squiggly channels, and back at myself.

Sometimes it would be fast, but sometimes the squiggly channels wouldn’t cooperate and it would take a while. Long enough that I might have to go to the bathroom. But there was no bathroom in the basement and I couldn’t go back upstairs. Someone might actually try to talk to me or my brother might just sneak downstairs and steal my spot. Fortunately, we did have a utility sink, so I would just pee in that. It’s all drains, right? Then right back to the action.

And then, finals week. Starting Freshman year of high school, we’d finish the year with  a week or 2 of exams. One test a day and then I was home by 1:30 or earlier. With no parents around. And nothing to do. Except study. Which I wasn’t about to do. To the squiggly channels! It’s amazing my hands didn’t cramp up during the tests.

Then I realized I didn’t even have to stay in the basement. My parents were out of the house, so I could watch in their bedroom on the biggest TV in the house. Of course, I still had some free time between refractory periods and all, and I couldn’t fast forward through the  commercials of my beloved afternoon cartoons, like Animaniacs and CatDog. So I did some exploring. I don’t know why, I’d never looked around like this before, but maybe I had some kind of sixth sense, or just some kind of evolutionary memory of hidden things, so I started checking out the closets in my parents’ room. Actually, now that I think about it, I might have just been trying to find some old Wrestlemania tapes. Either way, that’s when I stumbled across the Holy Grail. My dad’s secret stash! A discreet shoebox on the top shelf of his closet filled with VHS tapes. And not just any tapes. Porno tapes! No more squiggly lines! No more clothes! Just Ron Jeremy and some of the luckiest dudes in the world plowing scores of big breasted, big bushed blondes and brunettes. Now I had some paranoia to go with my pleasure. I’d get the chair to grab the box off the shelf, memorize the exact placement of the chosen tape, do my thing(s), rewind back to the exact spot the tape had been at, replace it in the box, then wipe the carpet to erase any sign that a chair had been there. The perfect crime.

Good times. The only problem was that, as I said before, I’d been taught that masturbating was evil. Excuse me, EEEEEEEVIIIIIIIIIL! Whacking off is wasting your precious seed. Every time you cum it’s like an unborn baby holocaust. So even though I was enjoying myself, I’d still feel pretty guilty. So I’d keep trying to quit. I’d say “Ok, that’s it, that’s the last time,” sometimes as many as 6 times a day. But the siren song always drew me back in.

Then one day in Biology class, I finally learned something interesting. And useful. Sperm only lasts in the body for 6 days. That means I wasn’t actually wasting anything. So unless I was going to get married in the next week, I figured I might as well flush out the pipes. Ah, science, finding religious loopholes for over 500 years.

And the truth is, masturbating wasn’t evil. It was far from it. It was absolutely necessary for getting through high school. If I wasn’t taking care of business at home, I would have been thinking about sex all of the time at school; Masturbating cut that down to only 50% of the time. It would have made it impossible for me to talk to girls, or even be in the same room with them. Plus it calmed me down, made me a lot less aggressive. Instead of punching someone who told me to “Go fuck yourself,” I’d just say “Don’t mind if I do” and go home.

So things were good. So good that I was actually sad when school ended. Because it was time for summer camp, a desolate desert with no TV, no Playboys, no privacy. Fortunately, I still had my memories, and my imagination. I didn’t realize it until then, but I’d just spent 6 months stockpiling what we men call “The Spank Bank,” a mental repository of pornography, a veritable Fort Knox for getting your rocks off. Every time I’d made a deposit into some socks or tissues, I’d also deposited the memory of what I’d been watching. Even if I just happened to see a beautiful woman walking down the street, or one of my more attractive classmates bending over to pick up her books, that image went into the bank too. By the time I got to camp, the Spank Bank was bigger than the warehouse from Indiana Jones, but organized better than the most obsessive comic nerd’s basement. Binders full of women, their images lovingly bagged and boarded and saved for further use, organized by size, shape, color and activity. And just as astronomers have categorized every type of star, I had images of nearly ever body shape, so I could look at any girl I lusted after, match her face to a naked body with approximately the same ass and tits, and get to work. When the time came, I’d put on a mental smoking jacket, light a mental cigar and pour a mental glass of whiskey, then peruse the aisles to fuel some mental manipulation. Or, I’d just dive in to my Porny Vault like I was Scrooge Mcduck.

But where to do it? I didn’t have a lock on my door. I didn’t even have a door. Just a bed surrounded by 20 other beds and guys probably thinking the same thing I was. The shower wasn’t an option because everyone would know, and we didn’t have that much hot water. Same thing with the bathroom stalls, which had doors low enough that a suspicious counselor could bust you, and the other campers were just as likely to throw a bucket water over the top—which had nothing to do with stopping you from masturbating, it was just considered the height of hilarity. So what to do?

I had to add a new wing to the Spank Bank, a small one that contained a large-scale map of the camp, like they have in the War Room in movies. It was marked with the location of every bathroom in the camp and its potential for pulling it. Did it have real doors? Was it secluded? Was it likely to stink?

Once I had my list of whackable washrooms, it was just a matter of finding my way there. Everyone must have thought the camp food was giving me the runs. Every time we were traveling the long road to or from the cafeteria, I’d disappear into an isolated bathroom behind one of the classrooms. If we were in the library, I’d just have to go to one of the nice single-room bathrooms. It wasn’t as nice as the basement or my bedroom, but it got the job done without worries. I imagine this is how people develop Germanesque fetishes around poop and golden showers. It took years before I lost the Pavlovian response to bathrooms. Sometimes just the right smell of fart would give me a boner.

Of course, sometimes I couldn’t get to one of the good bathrooms. It was raining or I was tired or the mood would strike me late at night, while I was in the bunk with no way or excuse to get to one of my happy places. I could try the bathroom in the bunk, but the risk was too high. I needed to add another arrow to my quiver. I’d already learned how to focus enough to see these images in my mind, to make them so vivid and real that I could masturbate to them. But could I take that to the next level? And so I’d lie in bed, looking like just another sleeping kid, my eyes closed and my arms harmlessly at my side, but with a handful of tissues surreptitiously stuffed into my pants. And in my mind I was in the Spank Bank. Fucking. Just going from one vault to another and fucking the lovely ladies inside. I’d concentrate, building the experience, imagining the room and our surroundings, her skin and her face and her hair and her breasts, the feel of her and her caresses, maybe I’d even bring another girl to the party. I wasn’t touching myself at all, except with my mind. But I made the image powerful, so real, that it felt like it was really happening—or at least how I imagined it would feel, since I had never felt it—and eventually, I’d get a real finish. And no one was the wiser. I still looked like I was sleeping, but inside I was doing my touchdown dance. I’d just mentally masturbated! I practically had telekinetic powers.

I wish I could say that I’d used these powers of mental concentration for good, to help me study or cure cancer, but nope, just for jerking off. Even did it on a plane once. In a middle seat.

Things were great until after high school, when I spent the year in Israel. Then the guilt started getting to me. Or maybe it was more fear. Because the rabbis were hitting the hell thing kind of hard, especially leading up to the High Holy Days when you’re supposed to purify yourself and beg for forgiveness so that G-d will grant you a good year instead of killing you. (And that hyphen in G-d? More Guilt). Plus being so close to the holiest sites in Judaism just made it feel wrong.

So I tried to cut back. I really did. But it wasn’t working. Then, on the morning before Yom Kippur—the day when G-d seals your fate—I woke up covered in sweat and also jizz. I’d just had a wet dream right before the holiest day of the year. I was ashamed. And terrified. I spent more time in synagogue that holiday than any day before or since, and then decided I absolutely had to quit.

One of the rabbis had told us that if you abstained from something for 40 days, you would never do it again. That was my way out, I thought. Just don’t masturbate for 40 days. Simple right? Tell that to anyone who’s tried to quit smoking. I made it a week, then relapsed. Made it two weeks, then relapsed again. Then I realized that I couldn’t just go totally cold jerky, and came up with a new plan. I would masturbate but not finish. That way I’d get most of the pleasure but I wouldn’t actually be masturbating. It’s all about the loopholes.

So I would take myself to the edge then pull back, then back to the edge and stop. This didn’t actually work—sometime around day 35 I went too far and couldn’t stop, then decided I was never trying to go 40 days again—but I did learn a tremendous amount of discipline. I wish I could say I used that discipline for good—to help me lose weight or something—but again, nope, just for jerking off.

So things were good again as I headed to college, and they were only going to get better. Thanks to the truth of Moore’s Law—the power of computing technology doubles every year—we were about to enter the Golden Age of Porn. Sure, the cable companies now had the power to completely block off the premium channels, eliminating the squiggly channels forever, but the payoff was more than worth it. It’s like we say on Passover:
¨ If I was still waiting 5 minutes to download a single picture of Jenny Mccarthy (un)dressed like a cheerleader, that would be good enough.
¨ If I was still waiting 12 hours to download a single clip from Where The Boys Aren’t 7, it would be good enough
¨ If I was still only able to stream Asian nurse orgy videos from free websites on the computer in the den, it would be enough
¨ If I could see a hot girl in a commercial, then go online and find naked pictures or videos of her only 25% of the time, it would be enough
All of those things would be enough, but now, there’s so much more. Now there’s smart phones, little magic porno boxes that fit in my pocket and show me naked women any time I want. On the bus, in a cab, in a box looking at a fox, in my office. And of course, technology is just going to get better. As Disco Stu would say “If these trends continue...aaaaye!”

I still try to keep mentally sharp instead of just relying on technology—I do have to deal with the Sabbath after all—but my mental focus just isn’t what it used to be. Plus, after years of porno videos on demand, the Spank Bank is bursting at the seams. It’s grown from a single enormous warehouse to a 1,000-acre industrial park and I can barely keep it organized anymore. If I try to concentrate on one scene, my mind still jumps to another and another, like I can’t stop rifling through the files looking for something better. So as I’m lying—or standing—there with my eyes closed, my mind is just flicking from one video to another, like a hyperactive 6-year old ODing on Cocoa Puffs flipping through the Saturday Morning cartoons.

Sometimes, I actually have to use a magazine, which isn’t as bad as you’d think. Sure, it can’t compare to video, but there’s a certain nostalgia to pussy on paper, a certain purity.

It takes me back, back to a simpler time, a time when Victoria Secret catalogues and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition actually mattered, a time when I was so desperate that I taped the scene from White Men Can’t Jump where Rosie Perez is lying in bed and FOX didn’t notice you could see half of the side of her nipple and I rewound with my toe so I could see it over and over again until I was done, a time when it was just me and Pam and a world of possibilities.

Some people say the internet is too much. That it’s not good to have instant access to anything from anal to Zemonova. That we’ll all get desensitized and think all women are just objects.

You know what I say to those people?

Go fuck yourself.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Are you talking to me?

“I’m asking, would you bunk with me tonight.” –Lurleen Lumpkin

When I said I'm not used to getting hit on, I wasn't kidding. At least once a month, I'll be  telling my wife Becky a story that happened at work or 10 years ago, and she'll say "You idiot. She (or he) was hitting on you." "What?" I'll say "Impossible."

So now I’ll actually ask her if she thinks a girl was hitting on me. She must really love that. If it’s a story that just happened at work, she must think I’m asking if I had (or maybe still have) a chance to cheat on her. If I’m asking about something from before we met, then I'm thinking how much better my life could have been if I’d gone with that girl.

She’s only half-right. If I’m asking about something that happened recently, I’m not thinking about cheating on her. I’m just trying to decide if I have to start avoiding that girl. Because I can’t handle that temptation.

But if I’m asking about something from the past, especially college, I am thinking about missed opportunities. Not really in an “Oh man, my life would be so much better with her “ kind of way, though there are a couple of those, but more of a "Damn, I could have had sex with her?" Like Catherine.

Freshman year of college. Not my first time away from home—I’d been to sleepaway camp and spent a year in Israel—but my first time outside of a predominantly Jewish community. My mother had requested that I be placed in one of the "Jewish" dorms next to the kosher cafeteria, or at least on an all-male floor in another dorm. So of course, I was placed across campus from the "Jewish" dorms and on a co-ed floor. Self high-five! When I realized girls like Morgan (aka Whoregan aka Moregasm) were going to be walking around in robes, or towels, or little gym shorts and tank tops...yeah, it was good times.

Catherine lived a few doors down and she was on the track team, so she was extremely fit. Abs of steel, buns of steel, everything of steel, even breasts unfortunately. Short bob haircut, pretty face, fun girl. But her roommate Sam, now she was a tall drink of water. Do people use that description for women? Anyway, Sam was a tall brunette, skinny but curvy in the right places, and she was the one I was really in "love" with. Love of course being the blinding lust of an 18-year old boy, the kind of lust that blinds you to all flaws until it’s too late. So while Catherine was cute, I never really thought about her because I had my mind on Sam.

One day my friends and I are coming back from a Black Sabbath concert and manage to get stranded at a train station 6 miles from school. At 1 in the morning. With no cabs around. And it was freaking freezing.

This was before smartphones were a thing. Maybe even before cellphones were big. So we start working the payphones, trying to find someone awake to give us a ride. And without cellphones, we actually had to remember people's numbers. Catherine was the one who came through and drove us back to school.

So now it's around 2 in the morning and Catherine and I are the only ones awake. I'm still a little amped from the concert and Catherine wants to show me something. The only reason she was up to get my call was because she had to study, so of course she's procrastinating. She's figured out a way to print directly onto pictures. Yes, this was before meme generators, instagram, or digital cameras. So she's going through her photos and trying to come up with song lyrics or poetry to fit the pictures and she wants some help. I remember suggesting something from "Sister" by the Nixons and maybe something from “The Fairy Queene.” Hey, I was an English major.

We're having a blast and it's getting late and she's worried she hasn't studied or slept but isn't about to do either. So she tells me to tell her to do it. Every 10 minutes or so, I say "Cath, time to study" or "go to bed" or "I'm getting out of here" but she doesn't listen. And she doesn’t let me listen. Almost like we were married.

So finally, I say "damn girl, am I going to have to sleep with you to get you to go to sleep?"

Now remember, this is really the first year that I've had serious interactions with girls. Yeah, there were girls in high school and camp but they were in separate classes or campuses. And I was just the fat kid in the corner. If we hung out, there were other guys around, there was a conversation that I could contribute to, not lead. There was seemingly no possibility of anything happening and so nothing to worry about.

But now, it was 1-on-1 or even 1-on-2 with these girls. In their bedrooms. In their pajamas. Or towels. On their beds. Or mine. Even with other people around, even in the middle of a party, there were possibilities. Anything could happen. All she had to do was shut the door. And that terrified me.

I didn't know how to handle it. How do you have a real conversation when there's just a thin board of corrugated wood between you and everything you ever wanted? When the act of closing a door could make all your dreams come true?

So I didn't. I hid behind dumb jokes. Made fake orgasm faces. Sang dirty songs about my red hot chocolate salty balls (I'm not black). I didn't realize it at the time, but I was doing everything possible to seem harmless, as if I wasn't interested in sex at all. Totally worked. Until this time.

That night, with Catherine, when I said "damn girl, do I have to sleep with you to get you into bed?" it wasn’t some smooth pickup line—Obviously, right? I was expecting a laugh. I was expecting her to go to bed. I was not expecting her to say...


What? That couldn't be right?


"Yeah. I'll go to bed if you sleep with me."

"Sleep? With you?"


"I should sleep here?"



"What do you mean where?"

"Well, Sam probably doesn't want me sleeping in her bed."

And that was that. Whatever had been going through her mind, whatever spell I'd somehow cast was gone. She told me to sleep in her bed and she'd take Sam's and she'd wake up early to study.

Believe it or not, it took me years to realize something might have been happening. I think she may have been giving me another chance in the morning when she told me to cover my eyes while she changed. I actually did. Argh, stupid oblivious 19-year old me. I was so sure in that moment that no girl wanted to sleep with me that I thought she couldn’t be serious, that she must just be playing around. That conversation and the whole night actually made sense to me. I didn't even think about it. I didn’t spend the next few days kicking myself for screwing up. It was just a good time. Like a coed one-on-one slumber party.

I hope Catherine took it that way, I hope she just thought I was a moron. Could she have been insulted? Thought I didn't want to have sex with her?

Because I did. So bad. So so bad. I wanted her and the sticky, sweaty, frantic, athletic 30 seconds of fun we would have had. But even if I’d known what she was saying, I don’t know what I would have done. Probably panicked. But maybe I could have got it together and had some fun. What then? She was catholic so there was no future there. A one-night stand, maybe a seven-night stand at best? With maybe a few more one-night stands scattered around over the next few months. Then just awkward moments at parties, uncomfortable meetings in the hallway, eyes anywhere but forward as we pass. And that's if things went well. What if it really was only 30 seconds?

These are the kinds of things that go through your mind when you're fat, poorly hung, and watch too much TV. You never think things will go well with a one-night stand. You think there's got to be drama because no way can a girl be happy with one night of fun. Either she'll be disappointed and word will get around or she'll fall in love and cling to you desperately as your awesomeness slowly drives her insane. I know it's ridiculous. I wish I'd fucked her. Yeah, it's nice I ended up saving it for my wife, but I think I would have been better off with some more experiences. Would make it easier to resist temptation.

Because now I'm working and I've got tons of female coworkers. Lots of young ones. Lots of hot ones. Becky's convinced most of them want to suck my dick, but she's not worried about it. And she doesn't need to be. For one thing, I'm sure she's wrong. For another, I'm terrified that she's right.

Like I said, if I know a girl is hitting on me, I freak out and start avoiding her. Can't be around her anymore. Definitely not alone with her. Because I don’t trust myself. Me, turn down a real opportunity? Me, who's only slept with one girl, and not very often anymore, pass on a chance to find out what I’ve been missing? I can’t even stop myself when I find out there’s a new type of Snickers bar. Or a new Crumbs cupcake. Mmmmm, Crumbs.

So could I resist some nubile young thing? Or some older, experienced sexpot? Or just any random, decent-looking girl who wants to have sex with me? I don't know. And I don't want to know. Because, deep down, I kind of know. I know I couldn't. I know what I am. A man, a frustrated man, with a wife getting fatter and less interested—and interesting—by the day. A weak man. An inexperienced man. Who'll always wonder what might have been. It's easier to run.

Fortunately, I don’t get hit on very often. Not by girls anyway. And I don't notice anyway unless she’s completely obvious. For some reason, that never happened until I was married.

Well ok, there was one time at my first job—telemarketing for internet advertising—right after we got engaged. Melissa—blonde and bubbly and possibly the hottest girl I’ve ever met—and Jessica—totally stacked Asian—decided to have a backrubbing contest and made me the judge. I’m on the floor of my office getting backrubs from two gorgeous girls, but I thought they were just screwing around because they’d been driven insane by boredom. Actually, I still think they were just screwing around. They were, right? ... Shit!

And then there was the time a gay guy hit on me. I was coming out a of cab, he was getting in, and he said something to me. I missed it and said "what?", he got out of the cab, got nose to nose with me, and said "you're a very handsome man." So I just pointed out my ring and got out of there. I didn't slap him for offending me, just thanked him for the compliment and ran to tell somebody—take notes ladies. But it was 2:30 in the morning and Becky wasn't home, so I wound up telling the door-lady.

But, the only girl that ever really obviously hit on me—obviously enough for me to notice anyway—was  Suzanne. Long blonde hair, a little thick, but with just magnificent boobs. So magnificent that you barely notice the horse face. You know how stylists are always telling fat chicks to slop on makeup and draw the eyes up to their face? Suzanne had to do the exact opposite. Well, technically she didn't have to do anything. Your eyes would be drawn down even if she was wearing a potato sack. Her breasts were so big and beautiful that they had their own gravitational pull. The bulkiest sweater in the world was powerless over that rack. Didn’t I say all girls named Suzanne had awesome tits?

We worked together at an advertising agency. I was the writer and she was the art director. She was fun, but seemed emotionally fragile. Not unusual in advertising. Or women. She'd cry because projects weren't going well, or because someone said something that might have been insulting, or because her cat was sick. Blink and she’d be overly cheerful, zipping from moping to hopping around the office in minutes, like a big breasted yoyo. Heh, that'd be pretty sweet.

We'd go out for coffee every morning with another fat, bald writer. I don't drink coffee, but don't mind walking. Better than working.  Neither of us were interested in Suzanne—both married—but I wondered if she kind of liked the attention, having 2 guys trailing her around. Maybe she thought we were interested. Then I started thinking she was getting too close to me. She'd make a lot of physical contact, touching my arm and stuff, no big deal really. But she'd get really excited when she saw me sometimes. Like "Yay, there you are." Weird since we rarely went more than a few hours without seeing each other. I didn't think much of it. Put it down to her being a little crazy. After all, she couldn’t be hitting on me.

Then came the office party. First we had an award ceremony. Typical office schlock, bad jokes, meaningless awards, lots of alcohol, few inhibitions. I've never understood the logic in these office parties. Sure, you want to reward your employees and build camaraderie, but a night of boozing seems like the wrong way to go. I'm no uptight teetotaler, but this is sexual harassment roulette. You're taking middle-aged people with one of their few chances to get away from their family and cut loose, getting them drunk and putting them in close proximity with the people that they think of when they fuck their spouses. Mixing nitro and glycerine has better results. I was at one party where a girl started giving some guy "straight brain" in front of everyone. When she got fired, she sued for discrimination because he wasn't fired. And why should he be? He’s not Zeuss. No one’s going to turn down "straight brain." Well, maybe Stephen Hawking.

So besides sitting with Suzanne and making fun of everyone else, I spent most of this party trying to keep my supervisor Fred from getting himself fired or sued. He walked up to some hot blonde with her hair teased into curls and her shirt open enough to reveal the tops of her perky tits and gave her a hug. A long hug. And judging by her face, a surprising hug. Then she came to me, putting me in the uncomfortable position of having to look down to talk to her while ignoring the fact that if I looked slightly away from her face I would have a nice view down her shirt. A great view actually. A very smooth view.

"You know what Fred just did to me?" she asked, "That!"

And she grabbed my ass. Hard. Not sure what she wanted me to do about it. Why didn't she just slap him? Or grab his ass. No need to harass me about it.  Was I supposed to hit him? Was I supposed to retaliate by grabbing her sweet ass? Hey, was she hitting on me? Shit. No wonder Suzanne looked a little pissy. Maybe I would have noticed but Fred caught sight of his dragonlady boss and yelled "I'm going to bang her!" I grabbed his collar to keep him from humping his way to the unemployment line and the blonde wandered away.

Then the afterparty. We left the hall and stumbled to another bar. On the way, Suzanne opened up about the many coworkers she had slept with—some still on the team—explaining why there was so much drama which of course I hadn’t noticed. Mostly the drama seemed to be around them not thinking it meant what she thought it did. Somewhere, far away, I may have heard some warning signs going off.

So we're on the second floor of the bar, wasted, chatting and watching our coworkers on the first floor.

"Hey, are those two dating?" I said, pointing at a couple of coworkers.


"Them. The guy with the shaved head and what's her name." I don't pay much attention to the names of people who aren't on my team.

"I don't think so."

"Good for him then. He's totally gonna nail her."

"What? You don't know that."

"Yeah, come on. Look at that. She's got her hand in his back pocket. She is down to fuck!"

"Hmmm. Maybe he's not interested?"

"No way, he knows where her hand is. And he’s not doing anything about. That means that he’s down to fuck and he knows she is too. You think he’s going to turn that down?"

"I think I want to put my hand in your back pocket."

It took me a second to realize what she said and another to realize what she meant. I was drunk. That meant what I thought it meant, right? Down to fuck, right? I'm drunk in a bar with a huge-breasted blonde throwing herself at me. Finally. But I'm fucking married.

So I’ve got to turn her down. But have to be subtle because she was slightly subtle, could pretend she was joking. Plus, not like I have any experience in the rejecting. Always the rejectee, never the rejector.

So I just said nothing. Pretended I didn't hear. Waited a minute and changed the subject. Smooooooth. And of course, when I got home to my wife, the only person I’m allowed to fuck, she wasn’t interested. I say no to the big-breasted blonde and my wife says no to me. Awesome.

But anyway, bullet dodged. I convinced myself that it was a drunken slip and moved on. I had to. It was the only way to stay sane. Otherwise, I’d have had to spend every day knowing I just had to say the word. Just say it and the shirt comes off, the tits bust loose and I bust something else. I'd have to spend every day wanting, needing, dying to say the word, but somehow not saying it

Things were fine I thought. She had her dignity, I had my head in the sand. All good here. But not good enough for her.

Sometime later, maybe a month or two, we're sitting at her desk, brainstorming, trying to come up with an ad. Just spitballing, throwing ideas out, shooting them down, tweaking them. And getting distracted, looking at videos on the internet, playing tic tac toe, following random threads down the conversational rabbit hole, the usual creative process.

Then she turns to me and says, "Hey, if you were going to have sex in one of the bathrooms here, which one would it be?"

Whoa. Lucky for me, I didn't notice her real question. This is just a normal creative conversation, right?

"Interesting question," I said, "I guess it would probably be one of the bathrooms I use to take a dump, you know?” Like I said, I completely missed her point. But even so, great way to throw her off the scent, as it were.

“Because you need the same thing, right? Low traffic, isolated, good doors on the stalls, not likely to pass anyone you know on the way out. I really like the 10th floor bathrooms. No one goes up there, the doors are real big, and there's even a lock on the bathroom door. So yeah, definitely the 10th floor bathrooms."

Then it dawned on me, right in the middle of my dump dissertation.

"Hey, you know that's a weird question to ask everyone."

She tilted her head, smiled and looked me right in the eye.

"Not everyone. Just. You."

WHAT!?!? Even I noticed that. She was down to fuck and not even my poop pontifications could stop her fornification fantasies.

I froze. Could have been a second. Maybe a minute. My mouth may have dropped open. I'd dreamed of moments like this. Hell, I'd jerked off to moments like this.

Five minutes. That’s all it would take to get to the 10th floor. To lift her skirt, push her panties to the side, drop my pants, lift her shirt, pull her bra down, free those breasts I’d been dreaming of. And it wouldn’t have to be just once. It could be every day.

It wouldn’t have to get weird. It would just be sex. Hot, frantic, daily. Daily! Maybe twice daily if I could handle it. She couldn’t be getting attached if she knew I was married. She just wanted to fuck, right. Ok, ok. it would totally get weird. And I’m married...boobs! Huge boobs! And sex!
And no one would ever know. Becky would never know. Only I would know.

So I looked at her, right in the eye for probably longer than I ever had before. I swallowed, I coughed, my eyes flicked to the hallway that led to the nearest bathroom, and I said “Uh, let’s get back to work.”

And we did. And we never spoke of it again. And I didn’t get laid that night when I got home.

When I left that job, I told Suzanne I’d try to get her a job at my new place. But I never did. I don’t want her around. Because I don’t know what I’d say next time.

Maybe this story proves I’m stronger than I think. But why take that chance? 
One day I might be weak. I might be angry. And I don’t want to take that chance. Because I know, deep down, beneath all fantasies and frustrations, deep down I know that I love my wife. And I don’t want to lose her.

Sorry ladies.

First woman in the NBA

With all this talk of Brittany Griner entering the NBA draft, people seem to have broken into 3 camps:

  1. Sane people who know she couldn’t make it and would be a benchwarming publicity show at best
  2. Insane people who think dominating women a foot shorter than her will somehow translate to success against bigger, taller, faster, and stronger men
  3. Even more insane people who think that suggesting she play in the NBA is insulting and sexist because it implies that men’s basketball is somehow more relevant than women’s basketball

The first group is right so I have no issues with them. The second group is made up of wild optimists and people who don’t believe what they’re saying; Men who don’t want to appear sexist and women who don’t want to look like they’re insulting their own gender.

But this third group, they’re the ones who bug me because they’re just lying for the sake of headlines. Or they just really are stupid. Or insane. Maybe they have a different definition of relevant. But the league that gets more money, more rating, more viewers, and more media coverage is more relevant, right? Maybe I’m the crazy one.

But, with all this in the news, I figured it’s a good time to post an old skit I wrote back when there was this much hype around around Candace Parker. Remember her? Yeah, no one else does either. Because the WNBA is so relevant.

Actually, it all reminds me of an old WNBA ad campaign for their playoffs. The commercials showed “famous” playoff moments and asked “Remember this?” To which I replied, “Of course I don’t.” My wife wasn’t too happy about that but, since she was an avid basketball fan who didn’t remember it, she couldn’t really argue too much.

Anyway, Candace was the first girl that made everyone think women’s basketball would finally be relevant because there was a woman who could dunk once or twice a season. Feel the excitement! Remember, she won a dunk contest against boys by doing a dunk any of them could have done ten times in a row without breaking a sweat? All of her dunks made ESPN’s Top 10 Plays because “WOW! A WOMAN DUNKING!” Expect great!

So we went through the same cycle that we’re going through now, just without the social media component. There were dozens of articles and stories about Candace was a sexy but dominant athlete who was finally going to make women’s basketball relevant, and then dozens of backlash articles and stories that claimed her sex appeal didn’t matter—Ok this sex appeal stuff doesn’t apply to Griner, but still, pretty much the same arc. And of course, no one wanted to write that WNBA games would still be unwatchable because that would be sexist. And what happened? No seriously, I’m asking. I think she got pregnant, maybe got injured, and possibly won a championship. She could be retired or in the middle of a historic run of championships. Nobody knows. Sure, I could do some research, but I wouldn’t have to if she and the WNBA had actually started to matter like everyone claimed it would.

Some people will blame the media for holding it down. They’ll blame ESPN for only running 30-second highlights on SportsCeneter, or blame Sports Illustrated or the papers for only dedicating a page or two to the league, but we all know they’d cover it if their was money in it. Which there isn’t.  

And now we’re going through the whole song and dance again. Only now reporters are breathlessly chasing after NBA players hoping to fool one of them into admitting that Griner couldn’t play in the NBA. Fortunately, they all see this trap—or they’ve been prepared by their PR team—so they regurgitate some noncommittal blather about how she’s dominant and fun to watch. But if one of them was dumb enough to say she could never compete in the NBA, we’d have a whole new story. We’d be treated to a week’s worth of yelling about how Player X is a horrible sexist and how dare that scumbag say Griner couldn’t make it.

But fortunately, Griner seems smart enough to know there’s no reason for her to embarrass herself in the NBA when she could just make a ton of money by dominating lesser competition in the WNBA. And who knows, maybe having 2 players who can dunk will suddenly make the WNBA must-see TV. 20% of the teams now have someone who can dunk! Wait, how many teams are in the WNBA? To Google!

Ok, there are 12 teams in the WNBA—and 8 of them make the playoffs? 75% of teams make the playoffs? Why not give out participation trophies?—so that means 16% of them have someone who can dunk. So there will be someone who can dunk in up to 33% of games. Good thing the WNBA just redesigned their logo to show a woman in the middle of dunking. They know where their bread is not buttered.

Anyway, I wrote this skit 5 or 6 years ago when Candace Parker was coming out of college. Just a guess at how it would go if a woman ever made it into the NBA. Enjoy.

The First Woman in the NBA

(SportsCenter, Enter Stuart Scott)

Stuart Scott:
Tonight on SportsCenter, a historical day for the NBA.  We’ve all heard the stories:  Girls can’t play with boys.  Those dawgs be too big, too strong, too all around dope for them to keep up.  Hos thinking they can hang with bros be straight tripping, yo!  Yes, like the Wu-Tang clan, NBA Men ain’t nothing to mess with.  But wait, tonight Tulana Parker will step onto an NBA court and she won’t be cheerleading, far from it, she’ll be playing, the first woman to ever play in an NBA game.  Now we take a look back to see wha...wha had happened?

(Cut to video from inside car driving through a poor neighborhood)

Tom Rinaldi:
Tulana Parker, her older brother Sean and their fifty siblings grew up poor in the poor side of town with their poor parent in a poor house made of poorboy sandwiches.  Realizing they needed an escape, their single mother sold her foodstamps for a set of encyclopedias, then traded them for a basketball, and changed their lives forever.

Uncle Jones:
Tulana had always idolized Sean and did whatever he did, and after they got that basketball they were inseparable.  It didn’t matter that their sneakers were made of dirty diapers, or that their court was just a toilet seat stuck to a telephone pole next to the train tracks, couldn’t stop them playing, couldn’t stop them dreaming.  Like Pops always said, you got to keep chasing the dream.

(Montage of pictures on a basketball court, bro and sis playing b-ball, bro holding up sis to dunk, bro in a Duke jersey)

Tom Rinaldi:
And chase them they did.  Sean always dreamed of playing for Duke, a dream that ended up being nothing, but net.

Cut to footage of a Duke game

The first game of the Duke season and what a story, Bob.  Sean Parker, who couldn’t even afford sneakers as a kid, starting for this storied franchise.

Yes, his entire poor family is here to see him living his dream.  It doesn’t get much better than this.  And here’s the opening tip.

Oh no, Parker is down.  It looks like his knees have exploded.

Tom Rinaldi:
The dream was over, but the nightmare was about to go into overtime as Tulana experienced a full court press of tragedy.  When Sean got hurt, his mother and grandmother were so stunned, they suffered simultaneous heart attacks and then her 50 other siblings drank a poison batch of Kool-aid.  Alone, Tulana returned home to find that her house had been eaten by a pack of Raging Cajuns.

Datdemdereshowuzunsumgoodpoboysammichesshonuff, he he, woooooeeeeeee, I’m drunk!

Tom Rinaldi:
Devastated, Tulana could have sought refuge in a downward spiral of drugs and alcohol

(cut to shot of drugs and beerbottles)

but one thing saved her, the dream

(basketball knocks drugs and booze out of the picture)

Tulana would also play for Duke, but her career would be mostly unremarkable, until one game in her sophomore year, she would do something so unbelievable, that she would achieve her dream, and one.

(Cut to Sportscenter highlight)

Scott Van Pelt:
Welcome to SportsCenter.  I’m Scott Van Pelt, alongside Neal Everett, and it turns out that someone has powers comparable to Wonderboy.

That’s RIGHT!  During tonight’s Duke game, a player dunked the ball not ONCE, not THRICE, but TWICE.  Not a big deal MAYBE, until you realize we’re talking about WOMAN’s basketball.

Here’s the highlight.  Tulana Parker has the rock, splits the defense like Angelina Jolie and -you’re the woman now, dog! – jams it home.  Girls got more ups than Tom Cruise.  Ten minutes later, Tennessee with the ball but it pops out like Lindsay Lohan on the red carpet, Tulana scoops it up, races down the court and PAPAZAO!  That’s levitation holmes!

That’s hot.

That’s hot!  In honor of this momentous occasion, here’s a special Top Ten of the top ten women’s dunks of all time.

ACTUALLY, we couldn’t find TEN dunks by a woman, so the last five will be a SQUIRRELL on WATERSKIS.

Oh, waterskiiing squirrel, I wish I could quit you.

Tom Rinaldi:
After that night, Tulana’s life changed forever.  Late night talk shows, the red carpet, endorsement deals

(Shot of Tampon box with Tulana on the front, saying – “When I’ve got a heavy flow, I grab a Tampax Tampon and jam it home!”)

Then she dropped another bomb, one that would turn the sports world on it’s head, declaring that she would apply for the NBA draft, setting off a fast break of scandal.

(Cut to NBA Tonight, John Saunders, Tim Legler and Stephen A. Smith)

John Saunders:
The big news tonight, of course, is Tulana Jones’ declaring herself eligible for the NBA draft.  Any thoughts?

Tim Legler:
Well, certainly, I can understand her wanting to play for a the NBA instead of it’s bastard sister league but she’s just not good enough.  Sure, someone will pick her as a publicity stunt but she’s just not going to be able to hang with the big boys.

What about you Stephen A Smith?  Do you agree?

BLACK!  Black black, black black black black, black black!  Black!

Tom Rinaldi:
Sure enough, the Knicks jumped on the opportunity to pick Tulana Jones and signed her to a two hundred million dollar, 20 year contract.

(cut to Isaiah Thomas)

Look, people are saying we just threw away this draft pick and all that money. And I say, have you seen my draft picks? Or my free agents? She can’t be worse than them, right? And at least she’s got smaller boobs than Eddy Curry.

And what about people who say that this is just a way to distract from the sexual harassment charges by Anucha Sanders?

That’s a very serious accusation, and I’ll be addressing it with Tulana in many private 1-on-1 meetings.

And how will Tulana coexist with her teammates?  Will she be safe in the locker room with a bunch of alpha males?

Look, there’s no difference between NBA players and WNBA players. They both love women. Sure, the men are bigger, stronger, faster, but other than that, there’s no difference. And if there’s one thing we know about all NBA players, it’s that they respect women.

Tom Rinaldi:
As expected, Tulana did have a hard time adjusting to her new teammates.

(Shot of Tulana and two teammates, one black and one white, posing for photos.  Teammates heads are too high to be in the shot)

Cameraman (from off-camera):
All right, big smile everyone.  Tulana, why don’t you toss the ball in the air?

(Tulana tosses the ball in the air and Teammate one swats it away)

White Teammate:
Ha ha, I can do that all night baby!

Black Teammate:
Aw, you’re just rejecting her cuz she’s rejected you so many times.

White Teammate:
Hey, she’s just playing hard to get.

No, I just don’t like you.

White Teammate:
Hey baby, don’t hurt me.

Black Teammate:
Yeah, don’t hurt me no more.

(Both start singing “What is love?” and grinding Tulana until she falls out of the picture)

White Teammate:
Ha ha, in Russia, sexual harasses you! Ha ha!

(Teammates highfive, then a ball flies out from off-screen and hits White Teammate in the balls.  Cut to Stuart Scott and Scott Van Pelt)

Stuart Scott:
And yet through it all, Tulana has been too legit to quit, telling everyone that they can’t touch this.  And tonight, she makes history.  Survive, and she’ll greatly exceed expectations, score a point or two, and she’ll make the homies say ho and the girlies Tulana scream.  So here’s to you, Tulana, you’re an inspiration, a role model to all the little girls out there, showing them that if you reach for your dreams, and practice hard, you can be half as good as a man. 

(Stuart and Scott pause, and start cracking up)

Off-screen voice:
Guys, we’re still on the air.

Wha-wha had happened


(Fade to black)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Epitome of Masculinity

“Most men lead a life of quiet desperation.” –Henry David Thoreau


“It’s true. It’s true.” –Kurt Angle

A girl once called me the Epitome of Masculinity. She had huge tits, so it's got to be true.

Girls with huge tits can't lie. And if they do, it doesn't matter. Because they have huge tits. Which is all that matters.

And holy moley, did these tits matter. I’m not talking about just any big tits. I’m talking massive, mammoth mammaries. I'm talking reinforced 8-hook bra, backbreaking boobs. The kind of boobs that haunt your dreams. The kind of boobs where you find out that she finally caved and got reduction surgery, and you weep like you've lost your best friend—even though you never touched them or saw them in all their naked glory, never knew if they were tipped with tiny rosebud nipples or giant dark salami-slice nipples—because it was good just to know they existed, and the world is a sadder place without them.

I first met her boobs in class when I literally got lost in her cleavage. The professor was droning on about Gilgamesh or something, when I spotted them across the table, swaddled in a soft, low cut sweater and firmly supported by what appeared to be a black lace bra. The dark crevasse between them seemed to go on forever. What treasures could be down there, I wondered. Could a man live in that space, surrounded by warmth and softness, cradled by firm yet yielding flesh? I was falling, deeper and deeper into the dizzying abyss between those luscious lobes, when I got the sense there was something wrong. A tingling, not just in my pants but in the back of my mind.

Reluctantly, I looked up and realized that the starer had become the stare-ee. She was looking right at me. And smiling! Now, a more confident man, and more importantly a more handsome man, might have taken this as a good sign. I did not. I choked. Literally. I just started coughing. Then I started taking meticulous notes about Gilgamesh, fifth king of Uruk. Did you know he rebuilt the temple of the goddess Ninlil? Very, very interesting, yes, much more interesting than staring down her shirt.

Her name was Suzanne and I think that name must make boobs grow. I've never met or heard of a Suzanne with an A-cup. Every Suzanne I’ve ever met has simply awesome tits. And no, I will not be naming my daughter Suzanne.

She told me her name after class when she actually approached me. But not to yell at me.

"What's the matter?" she said, "did I freak you out in there? Never had a girl smile at you before?"
"Um, no." I replied.

Smooth. Maybe if I'd said "not by such a beautiful girl," something could have happened. Or I could have been slapped. I didn’t know. Still don’t. I really wasn't used to girls smiling at me and I definitely wasn't used to them hitting on me. Which only now, 15 years later, do I realize is what might have been happening. Or was it? I still don't know. Like I said, not used to girls hitting on me.

Too bad. She was a redhead. Redheads aren't inherently trustworthy, like a girl with a great rack, but they are almost uniformly awesome. And when you combine a redhead with an unbelievable rack and tight pants—did I mention the tight pants—and a lower body that’s actually made for tight pants, well You've got something special.

But all I got out of it was a friend. Which was still cool. Because while it was fun watching them hang, it was fun hanging with her. And when my friends and I started our comedy troupe, we brought her in as a stage manager.

There was a skit where I was supposed to play a girl but of course, all I did was put on a wig and a dress and speak with a high pitched voice. I still moved how I always moved, shoulders back and arms swinging, and sat how I always sat, sprawled back in a chair with my legs as far apart as possible and at least one hand on my crotch. I was very clearly a fat man in a wig and a dress. The guys tried to explain, but it wasn’t taking. Besides, it is not easy for a fat man to sit with his legs together.

And that's when she said it:

"Jack, you truly are the Epitome of Masculinity"

I took it as a compliment. A great compliment. But I wondered if it was true. Sure, I was a manly dude. Big shoulders, big balls, big ego, wouldn’t go to the doctor for anything unless a bone was sticking out. But I was no Ron Swanson. I didn't know anything about cars, how to fix them or or tell them apart. I couldn’t build anything. I’d only shot things in video games. I’d never chopped down a tree or skinned a deer or broken a pool cue over someone’s back—although in my defense, the other guy always backed down before it got that far. My biceps didn’t ripple, my belly did. So I wondered if I truly was as manly a man as she thought.

But then I realized that most of the manly things I worried about had pretty much gone away. Most men couldn't build anything. They couldn’t fight. They couldn’t use their hands on anything but themselves.

And now it’s gone even further than that. Men have gotten less manly, and we’re getting worse every day. We’re fatter, lazier, softer. We let our lawyers do the fighting. We drink wine instead of beer, eat vegetables instead of meat. We spend most of our days sitting in chairs, staring at screens. We still brag about cars, but now slow and ugly is better than sleek and powerful. We fill our medicine cabinets, not our liquor cabinets. We’ve never heard of the word discipline and neither have our kids. We think sports are just for fun, losers just as good as winners, so we leave work in the middle of the day to watch our kids stumble around in a circle chasing a ball in a game that no one even cares enough about to keep score. We’d rather be politically correct than just correct. If we get mad, we don’t say anything until we’re on an anonymous message board or our therapist’s couch. We’d rather touch our feminine side than an actual woman. We don’t need to be dragged to the mall anymore, because we can’t wait to find another top to go with the new pants that we just bought online to compliment the new shoes we bought last week. We have an army of immigrants to do all our difficult manual labor while we debate which celebrity “wore it better.” We do dishes instead of secretaries. We don’t hammer nails, we do them. We’ve got softer hands than our kids. We frost any hair that hasn’t already been ripped off by a tiny Asian woman. We put concealer on our zits. We take our coffee with sugar, chocolate, caramel and appropriately named whipped cream. Not dairy whipped cream of course, since we can’t even drink milk anymore because it might give us gas.

But not me. I don’t do (most of) those things. I’m still carrying the manly torch.

I burp.
I fart.
I laugh at farts.
I think it's hilarious to write "eat cock" in the snow (in 10-foot letters or small letters made of pee).
I fucking love professional wrestling.
Until the internet saved me, I’d pay to see a movie just for the promise of a glimpse of female nudity.
I love pie, apple or poontang.
Is it someone's birthday? Beats me.
I only recognize 10 colors. Including black and white, which aren't really colors
I wear the same jeans for weeks. Ok, months.
I only have 3 pairs of shoes (dress shoes, sneakers, boots). Wait, do flip flops count as shoes?
I only buy new shoes when the old shoes fall apart. Completely. Just because my sneakers have a hole by the toe doesn’t mean I can’t keep wearing them.
I do this because I'd rather be kicked in the balls than go shopping. Heck, I'll get kicked twice. Really.
The only moisturizer I need is water
I have more words for “breasts,” “vagina” and “penis” than Eskimos have for snow. 
I don't know anyone's eye color.
I have no idea what anyone wore to anything ever.
I hate talking on the phone.
I’m always right.

Yeah, pretty manly stuff. Sure, I could be manlier, and there are still way manlier guys out there, climbing mountains and building skyscrapers. But those guys are outliers, sadly a dying breed. I’m right in the middle, between the Alpha Males and the Barely Males.

And as I spend another 8 hours in an office chair, middle aged, fatter than ever and now also balder, I know there are still millions of guys like me. Guys driving a dull minivan through a dull marriage, taking care of their families and trying to maintain some semblance of manliness in a world of emasculation. Guys wishing they had turned right instead of left, lifted some weights instead of more beer, guys who can feel their lives slipping away as they dream of the life they always wanted. Yeah, we love our wives and families but even so, we can’t help thinking that our lives could be better, that we could be better.

So even though I’ve never clenched a knife in my teeth before diving into a raging river and even though there is currently more hair on my back than has ever been on my face, I truly am The Epitome of Masculinity.